Mike Rowse A voice from New Mexico


Diversity of opinion? Really?

It never ends. Democrats on the Senate finance committee were hearing testimony about tax reform proposals and thought there were some very good ideas from the five people who testified. However every one of them said that was not enough ethnic diversity among the five witnesses. One senator said there were not enough African-Americans, Asians, Latinos, or women on the witness list. The same senator said that he thought there were some very good ideas spanning some broad viewpoints. But then immediately said that because of the lack of diversity in the ethnic and gender areas of the witness list that there really was not true diversity of opinion.

So once again the liberals are showing you what they truly believe as opposed to what they say. Those senators believe that if you have a certain skin color or gender that you must agree on every issue. They don’t really want a diversity of opinion they just want to look at the panel and say there are people that look different so there must be diversity. Never mind that Maxine Waters and Condoleezza Rice, both African-American females, hold philosophically diverse opinions on almost every issue. Never mind that George Soros and Arthur Laffer hold significantly different viewpoints on economic issues. Yet both are white men. Apparently words don’t mean anything it’s only the demographic characteristic that’s important.

Here are a couple of facts about this situation: the Democrats had equal input into the witness list and who could be called to give testimony. If they had truly wanted to see ethnic or gender diversity, they could have provided it. However once again they manipulated the situation so they could grandstand during their opportunities to speak. This was organized prior to the hearing by the Democrats to try and embarrass the Republican majority.

Let’s not forget that tax reform will benefit all of us, regardless of the color of our skin, or sexual orientation, or gender. I have not seen anyone put forth a tax reform bill that provides benefits only to certain that is that these or other demographic groups. It’s all based upon income without regard for any demographic characteristic.

While we are at it, let’s talk about this whole identity politics movement. We as a country and a society have made a great deal of progress in civil rights over the past 50 years fighting primarily against the Democrat party who have tried to stall the march towards equality. Remember it was them who put in place all of the Jim Crow laws and other laws that promoted and allowed segregation and racism. Why aren’t the people pushing for a quality celebrating how far we have come as opposed to continuing with this victim mentality?

And if we really have not made progress as they claim, we have been following their tactics and their plan to achieve racial equality for three or more decades. If it’s not working then let’s try something new to improve the status of race relations and the standing of minorities in America. Once again it just shows you that it’s more about having power as opposed to achieving a true goal.


John Kennedy has some really good ideas

Sen. John Kennedy from Louisiana as a couple of great ideas that are gaining traction. First the big complaint about Dodd Frank is the onerous regulations placed upon all banks which have really prohibited smaller banks from being able to loan money. This hurts middle income and lower income wage earners in America. Because often they don’t meet the strict criteria, being able to check off a box or put a number in the right place, that big impersonal banks have. Small local banks have more flexibility in loaning money; or at least they use to.

The stated purpose of the Dodd Frank was to rein in the big banks so Sen. Kennedy has proposed a solution, since it seems that there isn’t the political will to completely repeal the law. All you have to do is exempt the medium and small sized banks from the regulations put in place by the Bell. His proposal is that if you have less than $10 billion in capitalization you do not have to comply with Dodd Frank. Doesn’t that seem really simple and straightforward? Which probably means it doesn’t have much of a shot.

Secondly, he has offered a new bill that would require you to go to work if you are receiving Medicaid. Simply, if you are between the ages of 18 and 55, are not disabled; do not have kids; then you must go to work in order to continue to receive Medicaid benefits. The bill he has authored would require you to get a part-time job of at least 20 hours a week, in the alternative you can do 20 hours of community service, or you could enroll in a college degree program for the equivalent of 20 hours a week.

These are the kind of simple straightforward solutions that people will oppose, the media and the political elite will say it’s not that simple but it is. If our politicians really want to help the middle class they would give the smaller banks the exemption they need to begin loaning money again. This would stimulate the economy through increased housing purchases or construction; loans to people who want to start a small business; and so much more. And requiring Medicaid beneficiaries to work will be called and bigoted but the rest of us have to work to get what we need or want so why shouldn’t someone receiving benefits from the government, which is our tax money after work also?


The First Amendment is under assault, again


This discussion about tax reform isn’t about us; it’s about retaining power.

As we have watched the “debate” about tax reform over the last few weeks, it’s become apparent that changing things in Washington DC is going to be more difficult than anyone thought. There are many reasons for this but of course the underlying theme is that it’s all about power and control. We here in the mainstream media which parents the liberal mantra is that we can’t cut taxes because that will increase the deficit. For that the poor, the elderly or some other subgroup of Americans will be devastated because of the increased deficit and possibility that spending would be cut. Then there’s the old saw about giving tax breaks to the rich. The other consistent theme to this whole argument and discussion is that our political elite with their friends in the media ignore history.

We’re told that tax reform is complicated because people make decisions based upon the current tax laws and tax treatment of certain situations. They act like as if no alternative plans have ever been tried or proposed. Certainly people do make decisions based upon tax policy but a large majority of these deductions or so-called loopholes affect a small percentage of the population. A few years ago the Republicans put forth again a very simple and straightforward solution. It was basically a tax filing form that fit on a large postcard. This applied to individual income taxes. Basically you filled in a few boxes that included your gross income, then a lot of deductions for mortgage interest, child tax credit, charitable contributions, college tuition tax credit, and the earned income tax credit. Little bit of simple math and you either owed taxes or got a refund. Not only is that simple but it covers the vast majority of common deductions that people currently take. It would also reduce the size of the IRS saving hundreds of millions of dollars a year potentially.

Reforming corporate and business taxes would not be much more difficult. Certainly there are a lot more deductions for expenses that could be allowed. It’s not uncommon for most businesses to have capital expenditures for example or even research and development expenses. But limiting a lot of other specialty deductions that don’t apply to a majority of the corporate and business filers would be easy to do although politically difficult and of course that’s what this is all about.

Ignoring history is also part and parcel of the political elites modus operandi. Every time our government has cut taxes, revenue has grown. Whether it was Dwight Eisenhower, John F Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, or Bill Clinton, revenue has grown every time. Lowering the tax rate on businesses and individuals has stimulated the economy which not only means there are more sales and revenues to tax, but more people are in the workforce which means there are more individual taxpayers. And many of these corporations will repatriate money that has been sitting in foreign bank accounts because they don’t want to pay double taxes on that income.

When Ronald Reagan first took office the highest tax rate was 75%. He cut the top tax rate to 28% and everything else below that was similarly reduced. Revenues to the federal government double. Now I know some of you will say that the deficit grew under Ronald Reagan and it did. But that’s because Tip O’Neill and the rest of Congress went back on their promise to cut spending or even keep spending level. Once they saw the extra money coming in they spent it rather than using it to pay down the deficit.

The simple fact is this if you want to grow revenue to the federal government, or any government for that matter, cut spending. And get rid of baseline budgeting which is just as big of a culprit in growing the size of government and the deficit is anything else.

If this 'discussion' truly was about us and the taxes we pay or growing the economy or reducing the deficit, then it would be easy for Congress to come up with a plan and take action. But because this discussion is more about retaining power in Washington D.C., it's complicated; the politicians and bureaucrats are trying to figure out a way to pull the wool over our eyes once again and not do the job we said we wanted done with our votes in the last election.


Why not NM athletes?

I have been broadcasting football and basketball games for 17 years now at first it was both college and high school but the majority of my time has been with college sports. I’m also involved with tennis and golf at both levels. Over the years I have been asked why the smaller schools, Western New Mexico University, Eastern New Mexico University, New Mexico Highlands, etc. don’t recruit more players from New Mexico. Especially if those programs are not having the on-field success in the number of wins that you would want. The belief is, among parents of high school athletes, that the small colleges looked down upon the ability of New Mexico athletes. It’s not quite that simple.

I was listening to an interview being conducted by John Clayton of Delvin Cook, the running back from Florida State that many considered to be one of the top two running backs in the upcoming NFL draft. I think he gave one of the best answers to a question that was similar that I’ve ever heard. It provides at least part of the answer to why more kids from New Mexico high schools don’t have the success at the elite level or even the so-called mid-majors in college, that many people think they would have had given their success at the high school level here in New Mexico.

When I’ve been asked the question whether in general terms were about specific athletes, one of the answers I’ve always given is that it’s a numbers game. High schools in Texas, Florida, and California are huge. There are more players that are talented in those high schools than there are in probably two or three high schools here in New Mexico. When you’re playing against mortality competition in practice every day you get better. Dalvin was asked by John Clayton how growing up in Florida pushed him to be a better player. He said quite simply there are so many good running backs in Florida that you push yourself to be better than all of them. You watch things that some of the better ones doing you try to emulate them or do it better. You watch college running backs just at the schools in Florida and you see the best of the best and you learn from them. In other words the standard of excellence is much higher where there are a larger number of potentially elite players than where the number of potentially elite players is minimal.

That’s the problem with New Mexico, there is a dearth of talented players that can push the potentially elite players to get even better. Yes traveling teams and AAU can’t help but those seasons are so short as compared to the practice and regular-season in high school sports. If you are consistently playing against teammates and or opponents in high school that are going to go on to play college at some level you will get better if you continue to work hard. If you’re playing against the kid who spend their summers goofing off or doesn’t have the potential to play at the next level, there’s only so far you can advance on your own. Yes there have been exceptions like Brian Urlacher or Tim Smith; but those guys are the exceptions.

I can tell you how many top high school players in football and basketball from New Mexico I’ve watched attend Division I programs and never really get a chance to play. My cousin was one of those players. He played his high school basketball in Aztec and was recruited by a number of what we call Division II schools now and a few Division I schools. Like a lot of New Mexico athletes he wanted to go to the best school in Division I that he could. He ended up at the University of New Mexico playing with the likes of Luc Longley. He sat the bench for three years, rarely getting into a game. He was the kid that everyone cheered for when he finally got into the game for the last 30 seconds of a blowout win. He didn’t play his final season for a variety of reasons, mostly not liking the new coach, but including the fact that he just sat the bench.

Too often this is the story for many of the top athletes in New Mexico. Because they are outstanding at the high school level everyone tells them they can go to the top level in college athletics but more often than not they end up sitting the bench or quitting somewhere during their career. They could go to a very good Division II school and get to play almost from the beginning and be a top player on the top team at that level. If they really love the game they’re playing, why would you go somewhere just to sit on the bench and say I’m a Division I athlete as opposed to playing at a lower level and potentially becoming a legend there?

I have seen some of the top high school athletes in New Mexico attend Division II schools and become stars for them and never regretted that decision. I have also seen some that spent two years at the lower level and then transferred to a Division I school and gotten to play some and it worked for them. But rarely do I see in New Mexico athlete go straight to Division I and become an impact player for their entire career. More often than not that watch those players quit because it wasn’t fun anymore.

So I guess that’s kind of a long-winded, roundabout way of saying that New Mexico schools do try to recruit New Mexico high school athletes but too often those surrounding that athlete have a higher opinion of that person’s ability and push them to go to bigger schools. Every coach I’ve been around, including schools for whom I do not broadcast, have said the same thing; the biggest obstacle they have been trying to recruit New Mexico high school athletes is the parents and most of the coaches who are telling this kid to go Division I. The story is usually the same, a coach from a big school is telling that kid that they will make him or her a project and that they will eventually play for that team. And what kid doesn’t want to go to a bigger school where the lights are brighter and the crowds are bigger? But a lot of the schools that I’ve been around in my career have crowds that are just as passionate, lights that are just as bright and yes they send a significant number of kids to the next level.

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Are you sure you want unfettered immigration?

Atty. Gen. Jeff sessions was in Nogales Arizona this week making a statement about the administrations stance on illegal immigration. Of course the left wing and many in the media, which are the same I know, said that the policies being implemented by a Trump administration racist and inhumane. Again they obfuscate the facts in order to create an emotional reaction in the low information voter with the intent of returning themselves to power rather than having a legitimate debate about our immigration policy.

We should make it very clear that the conservative position which is essentially the same position that Pres. Trump has taken, is that we want to be able to control who comes to America for the purposes of trying to weed out as many bad people as we can. Whether they be terrorists or criminals doesn't matter. We know that many countries in Central America for example have released their prison populations and given them assistance in trying to get to the United States, crossing our border illegally. That is a fact that cannot be denied. Neither can it be denied that some of the people coming across illegally, from any country, are here with the sole intent of improving their lives. Our position is that we want to help more of them, those who want to a better their lives, come here legally. To that end, there needs to be a change in how legal immigration is handled by this country. But until that is done, we can't continue to allow unfettered illegal immigration. All we have to do is look at history to tell us that things will not happen.

All over Europe, countries who have taken the "refugees" with little or no venting, from the middle eastern countries, are re-thinking those policies. The vast majority of refugees coming from the middle east are not assimilating into the cultures of the countries where they now live. In fact they are doing everything they can to change the cultures of those countries to match their belief systems. Often they are using violence to achieve that goal. It is not hard to find the stories because they are very prominent in the European media outlets, at least many of them. The left in this country will ignore those realities as they argue with Pres. Trump about his immigration stance.

Very often one of the arguments the left uses is that not all Muslims are violent jihadists. That is true, but one of the arguments that the conservatives have stated is that the so-called moderate Muslims are not speaking out against the radical set of their religion that promotes violence against all nonbelievers. All we have to do is look at what happened in Sweden recently to give us the most recent example of how the moderate Muslims are not part of the solution. Now we can argue about whether or not there are really moderate Muslims who do not share the belief system of the radical sect of Islam or whether all Muslims share their views but just do not participate in the violence. For the purposes of this discussion, we are going to assume that there are moderate Muslims in the world.

After the recent attack in which a Muslim man drove a vehicle into a crowd and killed a number of Swedish citizens, there was a candlelight vigil held to show support for the families of the deceased. A reporter from CNN attended the event to see for herself whether or not moderate Muslims would actually attend the peaceful vigil. After she wrote her article she was being interviewed on CNN about what she did see. She admitted that she attended the event expecting to see some percentage of the crowd, which she estimated at between 20 to 25,000 people, representing the Islamic faith. She admitted that she wanted to refute the narrative from the right that moderate Muslims are sitting on the sidelines.

What she said she found was quite different than what she expected. She and her crew, along with reporters from other entities, roamed through the crowd for quite a while, both before, during, and after the vigil. She said that if there were any attendees that practiced the Islamic faith, none of them could find any. They all agreed that the crowd was quite homogenous, essentially being made up of white skinned and blonde haired Swedish citizens. There was very little diversity in the crowd that she or her colleagues observed.

She went on to say that there are now to Sweden's: at least around Stockholm, which she said the main city is still populated primarily by Swedish, natural born, citizens and the suburbs which are made up primarily of Islamic refugees. Those suburbs do not reflect Swedish society in any way shape or form. Those neighborhoods have been converted to Islamic conclaves. In fact, the Swedish Postal Service recently announced that they will no longer deliver mail to those neighborhoods because of the violence committed against their postal workers. she said she was disappointed to confirm what many on the right side of the aisle have been saying about unfettered immigration from middle eastern countries. She of course still believes that engagement with these communities would solve the problem but is not as firm in that belief as she was before.

Of course her experience with that vigil is just one of many examples that we can point to in almost any country in the world that has accepted Islamic refugees. Their experiences have been extremely similar and not in a good way. It's nice to be idealistic but you must also be realistic and realize that not everything will go the way you wanted to know matter how hard you try. Pres. Trump's immigration policies are the right thing to do. They are not bigoted or racist in any way shape or form because it will apply to every country whether it be Islamic, Christian, Jewish, or any other demographic characteristic you want to identify. And I think deep down, even opponents will agree, if they are open-minded and well-informed, that these policies are the right policies to adopt. You will

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Sometimes you see something and you have an initial reaction in which you are dismissive of the situation or support it of what is going on: then after a bit of reflection you’re not quite so sure how you really feel about what people are doing. After the terrorist used the vehicle to drive through a crowd of bread to kill people in England, the reaction of many Brits was interesting and I found myself at first dismissive of what many were doing but now I’m not so sure.

Of course after the attack, there was the typical discussion about whether or not radical Islam was to blame and the left of course accused the right wing updating all Muslims and being intolerant. So what many people started doing was walking across that bridge, riding the subway, or walking through predominantly Islamic neighborhoods in London. They would take a selfie with their phone and put the hashtag, “I am not afraid”. Now I agree with the idea that in the face of such heinous attacks we have to stand up strongly in defiance of what the terrorists are trying to do to our society. But I think I’ve grown so tired of the selfie and hashtags that my initial reaction was somewhat dismissive of what these people were doing.

To some extent walking across the bridge and/or taking the subway right after a terrorist attack is not a very brave action. In those areas where the attack occurred or might occur, there is increased security and a heightened awareness of potential threats. So it really doesn’t take much to go to those areas because you are probably going to be safer there than in other parts of the city.

But there is some value in symbolism and sending a message to the terrorists that essentially says you are not going to change the way I live my life and you are not going to scare me into being subservient to your demands.

But you put these two acts together with walking through Islamic neighborhoods and aren’t the left wing admitting to some extent that it is Islamic-based terrorism? Remember the left wing tells us that this is not a philosophy based in the Muslim religion, despite the facts that tell us otherwise. When the conservatives say that we must battle the philosophy of radical Islam in order to be successful in this terrorism war, we do not condemn all Muslims. Only those that believe in the radical form of jihad that drives these insane acts. It’s the left wing that wants to put everybody that shares a demographic characteristic into the same category.

So by saying that they are not afraid to walk through an Islamic neighborhood they are tacitly admitting that Islam is the problem; otherwise why engage in the “brave act” of walking through an Islamic neighborhood? It’s because you inherently know that at least part of that population wants to kill you because you are different yet when it becomes time for you to admit that and take action based upon that fact, the left wing cannot and will not admit the truth.

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To whom does the President owe an obligation?

I’m not 100% sure to which radio show I was listening, I think it was Neil Cavuto, but as usual I was getting back in the truck after visiting with a client and came in to the middle of the interview. The gist of the conversation for the two guests on the show, one a conservative one liberal, was to rate the job Pres. Trump has been doing. At the time I came into the program to liberal was discussing the differences between governing and being the CEO of the business. She of course was taking the position that the two are vastly different endeavors and skills learned as a CEO do not translate to governing. She could be more wrong, but not by much.

Was she made several points how the two positions are different let’s start with the idea that the president is not a CEO. At this point she really couldn’t be more wrong. A president is a CEO with duties and responsibilities that are extremely similar to that of the president of a private corporation or a public corporation for that matter. The president of the United States is tasked with the day-to-day operations of the government. The legislative branch sets the parameters by passing a budget, laws etc. in the president has to conduct business within those parameters. He has to carry out the tasks given to him by the legislative branch and within the confines or limitations outlined by the judicial branch. That is exactly what the CEO of a corporation does. He or she carries out the day-to-day operations in accordance with the overall budget and plan as outlined by the CEO and approved by the Board of Directors. The skills are identical.

This pundit went on to say that unlike a CEO the president has several entities to which he is beholden and that he has to satisfy: that being the legislative and judicial branches, as well as the citizens of the United States, and in her opinion, the fourth estate also known as the media. She said that the CEO of a corporation doesn’t have to answer to multiple bodies or have code equals with whom the CEO must share power and control. There is a modicum of truth to that statement but again it shows her ignorance of what a CEO really has to deal with, or she is playing politics with the low information voters by misrepresenting what a CEO has to do.

The CEO has to answer to a body of stockholders. Certainly they do not have the power that the legislative branch does but they can vote in essence by increasing or decreasing the stock price based upon the performance of the CEO and how the company is performing compared to expectations. They also have the right to vote at annual meetings which can result in changes in policy very similar to changing the policies a president must follow.

The CEO must also answer to a board of directors who will set the tone for the direction of the company but with a great deal of input from the CEO and his or her administrative staff. Very similar to what a president does with the legislative branch. And similar to what a judicial body does, the Board of Directors can tell the CEO that he is out of bounds in the way he is running the company.

Just like a president, a CEO has to play nice with a lot of people. It’s called politics both in the government and in the corporate world. You have to negotiate, you have to cajole, you have to convince people that your policies or the way you want to run the company are the right way to go. You have to get them on board and buy into your plan so that you can succeed in your position.

And let’s get to this obligation to the fourth estate that she spoke of. The president has absolutely no obligation to the media. The president does not have to answer to the media or share power with the media in the way that he does with the other branches of government. Certainly his job will be easier if the media is favorable towards him because of the way he interacts with them and the access which he gives them not to mention whether or not they agree with his policies. But to say that there is an obligation to include the media in the decision-making processes is unbelievably moronic. The media only has power because they control the way information is disseminated and they can taint the information to serve their purposes. This of course can affect how the citizens vote, whether or not to retain the president. But that’s part of the problem, I believe the media is convinced in general that they are truly the governing body and they can control what happens or doesn’t happen in the legislative and governing process.

Her comments also show the arrogance that is pervasive within the media community. What I think Donald Trump is good at, almost as good as Ronald Reagan, is bypassing the media and going directly to the American people in an attempt to ensure that the truth as he sees it gets to the American people. Whether you agree with Donald Trump or any president for that matter and how that person conducts themselves, having access to more information can only be a good thing. As we have seen in the past, the media is not honest with the American people and how they report upon stories. And that is probably what has the media more upset and acting like a petulant child.

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Our judicial system in crisis

We have talked about the state of our judicial system off and on for quite some time. Usually we’re talking about the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, also known as the Ninth Circus Court of Appeals, which regularly ignores the Constitution and the laws of this United States as an act of people’s representatives to try and accomplish what they believe to be right.

However, over the last few years and now in the last couple of months, we have seen judges become blatantly proactive in coming up with some of the most convoluted reasons to “justify” their decisions. These recent decisions in which courts have granted injunctions against Pres. Trump’s executive orders regarding immigration from seven countries are the most egregious examples of judicial activism yet.

While two judges ruled against Pres. Trump in different jurisdictions, the judge in Hawaii is the most idiotic. Even Alan Dershowitz, no fan of Donald Trump or his executive order, disagreed with the judges “logic” in justifying the ruling. Probably the most troubling reason the judge gave for filing the injunction was that Pres. Trump had made certain comments during the presidential campaign that led this judge to believe he and everyone who helped write the Executive Order were bigoted towards Muslims. Now this had not been argued nor had it been presented as a justification by the plaintiff but even if it has is not supposed to be allowed into a court hearing. But the judge came up with it on his own.

As Dershowitz pointed out, based upon that ruling alone this decision should be overturned quickly. Because what happens is the argument that okay, if you use statements that Pres. Trump made outside of any action related to this Executive Order then this order would have stood the judges test at Pres. Obama been the one signing it. That is not the standard for judicial review. It is beyond the pale for a judge to do that.

As Dershowitz also pointed out, if Pres. Trump were trying to ban all Muslims from entering the United States and why did he not include every Islamic country in the Executive Order rather than a small percentage of the population of Muslims from around the world as represented in the seven states identified by Pres. Obama as promoting terrorism against the United States?

Which takes us to another point; this judge in Hawaii said that Pres. Trump had not established a case to prove that the Muslims emigrating from these countries were a danger to the United States. First of all the seven states identified in the Executive Order were placed on the list by Pres. Obama and his security and national defense staff. They identified the seven states as promoting terrorism against the United States and its citizens. They use that list to justify their own immigration ban just a few years ago. That said, under the statute that gives the president clear authority to take this action, the standard of proof is very low. I don’t think anyone in their right mind would disagree that the seven countries contained a large number of people involved in terrorist organizations and have exported that terroristic acts to other countries. This would include the United States.

The judge went on to say that the state of Hawaii would suffer economically because of the decrease in tourism and the lack of students coming to their universities from the seven countries. Hawaii could not show factual documentation that this was the case and that a significant number of tourists come from places like Iran, Iraq, Syria or the Sudan. I would venture to say that the number of people traveling anywhere from some of these countries is minuscule when it comes to tourism. And let’s not forget that the Executive Order very clearly set out exemptions for people who already had visas as tourists, workers or students or had a green card.

But the most damning action taken by this judge, and is certainly not the first, is to grant protection to noncitizens under our Constitution. He claimed that banning Muslims from these countries was a violation of their First Amendment right to freedom of religion. Let’s be very, very clear: The U.S. Constitution does not provide any rights to non-citizens. Period. End of story. And apparently we do have to say it again, this is not a ban on Muslims this is a ban on anyone in that country and these are not 100% Muslim countries.

These recent decisions paired with the increasing frequency of activist judges, decisions foretell a serious crisis in our country. The judges are creating policy and creating law when they do not have that power. They are here to act as a check up on the other two branches of government to ensure that the laws that are passed in the way those laws are applied are in accordance with the founding documents of this United States of America. They are not to further goals and cannot be achieved politically in any way shape or form. It’s either a yes you can do that or a no you can’t.

To continue allowing these judges to exceed the authority granted to them by we the people is to take this country down the road that we do not want to travel. Many of us have been worried about the expansion of government and the possibility that either the legislative or more likely the executive branch of government would become something of a dictatorial body ruling over the citizens of America. The real danger has been and now more than ever is the judicial branch. We watched the Supreme Court come to decisions, most obviously with Obama Care, that were unbelievable. Twisting the language of the law in ways was not intended in order to find that it was constitutional. Do you remember Obama, Nancy Pelosi, and Harry Reid telling us that the individual penalties in the bill were not taxes? Yet Justice Roberts had to find that these were taxes in order to uphold the constitutionality of the bill.

You might be asking now, what do we do about it? First, let’s Pres. Trump appoint true constitutional judges to the Supreme Court. And while I know the reasoning behind having lifetime appointments for judges, in today’s world that doesn’t necessarily work well. Maybe at levels just below the Supreme Court, we need to have a judicial review panel that can recommend to Congress whether to keep or remove judges based upon their adherence or nonadherence to the Constitution. I think it’s also time to start looking at non-attorneys as judges. Having a law degree does not mean that you are any smarter or more well-versed in our Constitution than anyone else. I would put any graduate of Hillsdale College against almost every one of our appeals court judges when it comes to arguing constitutional law.

I know that some of these ideas need to be fleshed out as to what to do with these judges but if we don’t do something soon it may not matter what reforms Donald Trump tries to put in place because some judge somewhere is going to try and stop him. Maybe he can do what Obama did, ignore the judges and do what he wants anyway, it seemed to work pretty well for him.


It’s all about power: example # umpteen million

I have said it recently but it bears repeating; the actions of our political elite, primarily the liberal Democrats, but including the leaders of the Republican Party in Congress, care more about power than they do about having principles and doing what is right. Maybe they do have principles, it's just that their guiding principles have to do with staying in power and not trying to improve this country.

Chuck Schumer is threatening to shut down the federal government to prove a point to Pres. Trump and the Congressional Republicans. He wants to stop things like the building of the wall in the Mexico border and some other plans that Pres. Trump has outlined, and he's willing to filibuster the budget bill to get his way. As a side note, it's interesting to watch the Democrat leadership who are acting like they are still in charge of Congress and the White House. If the Republicans had leaders in either house with the backbone and principles, they would do exactly what the Democrats did to them when the Democrats controlled Congress; tell them to shut up and go along.

It is worth pointing out that in 2013 when Republicans threatened to filibuster the budget bill and shut down the federal government, Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi, and their brethren screamed to high heaven. They talked about how much those actions would hurt the average citizen especially the poor, the elderly, those that rely on the government for their income, not to mention the federal employees that would be laid off. Yet here they are threatening to do the same thing and ignoring all the reasons they gave against shutting down the government in the first place. So to play by their rules, they must be wanting grandma to guide to she can get her Medicare or Social Security check; they must want little children to start because school lunches will be funded or mommy's welfare check wont come through.

Let's ignore the fact that if there is a government shutdown there is already a law that provides for the providing of essential services such as the administration of transfer payments, Social Security benefits, veterans benefits, so on and so forth. No one is going to start or die because the government "shutdown".

But here is why I think Chuck Schumer may not want to go through with this plan. If he shuts down the government he plays right into the hands of Pres. Trump in keeping one of his campaign promises; to cut the size of the federal government and get rid of the fat. If you shut down the government, especially for an extended period of time and begin to see which departments are considered non-essential, that helps him identify where to cut waste and excess government departments. That of course will diminish the power that government hands over the average American citizen and our lives.

So I say, "shut it down!" Let's figure out where we can start cutting people and the sooner the better. Microphone off